All Modules Suddenly Appearing on All Pages on Joomla

We got a call yesterday (well, technically, this morning) around 1:30 AM after midnight, it was a new client telling us that his Joomla website is completely messed up. He told us that all the modules are displaying on all the pages. We checked his website and we saw the problem: all published modules were appearing on all the pages, making the whole website look extremely weird.

In all fairness, we have been working on Joomla websites for a decade or so, and we have never, ever seen this problem. We were sure it was a plugin that was causing this problem, but we just didn’t know which one. The client’s website was a Joomla 2.5 website.

We went through all the 3rd party plugins and we noticed that the last plugin installed was the Advanced Module Manager plugin. We disabled this plugin and boom, the website is completely fixed! We were amazed since NoNumber, the Dutch development company that created that plugin, is known for its reliable extensions. In fact, that particular extension has a 5 star rating on Joomla’s JED (The Joomla Extensions Directory), which is extremely rare. Apparently, there was a huge bug in that extension that caused this problem. This means that with 3rd party extensions, you’re never really 100% safe.

Here are a few tips to follow when installing a 3rd party extension (especially when doing the install on mission critical websites) assuming you don’t have a development environment (if you have a development environment you can just do the install there and then port it to production):

  • Make sure you have immediate access to a developer before installing the extension. (We’re always available for help!).
  • Make sure you backup your website before installing the extension.

  • Check if the extension throws any errors when it’s installed. If it does, then don’t use the extension and contact your developer immediately.

  • Use the extension very carefully – especially when it’s a system plugin. Read the instructions and make sure that all the values of all the settings in that extension are correct.

  • If it’s a plugin, then enable it (and remain on the same page in the backend), and then go to your website and check if the everything works correctly and the plugin is doing what it should be doing. If it doesn’t, then disable it immediately and contact your developer.

Now, if you have the same problem on your Joomla website because of the Advanced Module Manager plugin (or because of any other plugin, for that matter), then please contact us. We can fix the problem for you in no time and for a very low cost. All you need to do is shoot us an email or give us a call (we always answer the phone!).

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